Nice day to wash the bike :)

Hi all, does anyone know if there is a workaround to import my old Known status posts into Micro.blog? I have an RSS export of my Known posts, but not XML or WXR.

I’ve just temporarily disabled my Instagram account. I don’t use it that much, and despite tightening up my notification settings I was still getting distracted by things I just didn’t want to see. If I don’t miss it, I might make it permanent.

Well, I’ve decided to set up a hosted micro.blog account, rather than POSSEing from WordPress and Known as I’ve been doing up until now. Looking forward to testing out the features.

An article about cycling campaigning, but also an excellent general article about inclusivity and understanding privilege. As a ‘Default Man’ myself it’s certainly made me think: On inclusivity in cycling, privilege and knowing when to shut up and listen

Someone tooted this link on Mastodon earlier. Really interesting read about a crime I knew nothing about How an Ex-Cop Rigged McDonald’s Monopoly Game and Stole Millions #truecrime

Trying Mastodon Auto Share to see if I can POSSE from WP to Mastodon. If this appears, it’s working!

Just finished reading Kill Process, a fantastic techno-thriller with added #IndieWeb interest for good measure. May write a detailed review in due course 📚

As it’s Micro Monday I’d like to give a shoutout to the new @til Today I Learned microblog site made by @simonwoods - I’ve been falling off the #Indieweb wagon recently, and it’s community-led things like things that are inspiring me to get back on the horse. Mixed metaphors I know! #MicroMonday

Really interesting article, Cathie. I do like the idea of having different pages for different things but all driven from the same ‘root’. So photos end up on a photo page, short notes on another page, etc.

Having just finished a book, I thought I’d try out the Indie Book Club. I can see how this will be useful, though haven’t worked out yet how I could PESOS this to my own site.  https://indiebookclub.biz/users/raretrack.uk

Enjoyed reading the ‘Discovering the Lhasa of Europe’ article in @hiddenEurope magazine #54 - especially as in just a few weeks we’ll be in northern Albania to see the area for ourselves :)

🎵 Just finished listening to the 1990 album ‘Electribal Memories’ by Electribe 101. One of my absolute favourite albums, and I only bought it by chance!

I usually popped into the record shop in the nondescript dormitory town I grew up in to see what was new, and kept seeing this under “E”. After a few visits nobody appeared to be buying it. I was intrigued enough to buy it album coverwithout knowing anything about it - something I almost never did.

Billie Ray Martin’s voice just blew me away (and she was only, what, 20 years old back then!). The combination of the understated electronic music and her soulful powerful voice, for me, approaches perfection.

There’s not a duff track on the album, and it ends (excluding remixes) with the epic tour-de-force title track: over 10 minutes of immersion in electribal memories (listen to find out what they are!).

The album is timeless. Twenty-eight years on, and it’s never lost its hold on me. And, I hope, never will. Enjoy… 🎵


@AnquetMaps On OMN PC are there keyboard shortcuts to zoom in and out, and to change between maps? On @memorymap it’s easy (+/- and I/O). Simple functionality, but so much quicker than clicking / scrolling.

Really fancied a cupcake from our local cupcake factory @thecupcake_comp so trudged there through the snow, but they were shut due to water problems. Gutted!  #CupcakeShortage #Letchworth http://www.thecupcake.company/

“I watch the snow make slow time” - very apt lyrics for the weather outside the window ( Hook in Her Head by @throwingmuses )

The good folks at @realtimetrains are looking for GPX tracks of GB train journeys. I’ve just sent them a recent one I recorded - they need as many as they can get, so if you can help please do! www.realtimetrains.co.uk/tracks

Upgraded my network following the excellent Ubiquiti Home Network project at https://github.com/mjp66/Ubiquiti -first seen on @sggrc #SecurityNow - now have segregation for IoT devices & guest network. Longtime itch scratched!

After many many years of using #MemoryMap I’m wondering whether to move to @AnquetMaps - the price and features seem better (especially with the January sale), but sample maps don’t seem to be quite as sharp. In two minds!

UB40’s debut album - Signing Off - was the 1st I bought with my own money (Xmas 1980). Just listened again - as fresh and radical as ever. They never reached those heights of perfection again 🎵

Kingston Arms, Cambridge

Wondering how photos POSSE from WordPress to Micro.blog, and whether I’m doing it properly.

So here’s a good backstreet pub in Cambridge. I had lunch and a nice couple of pints of real ale in here yesterday.

Today seems to be a techie woes day. My Lightoom > Koken Publish Collection plugin has stopped working properly, about to give up on it!

Goodness me, I am miffed with Microsoft. The recent Windows 10 update reset all my privacy settings, customisations and firewall rules - without any notice of intent to do so. And it reinstalled all the crapware tile apps I’d studiously removed previously. I am seriously irked!

One day of #IndieWeb: my December challenge was to make my home page WordPress and move my Known stream to a subdomain. Short story: done! Long story: not easy, will post more soon

Also on:



Why I've migrated my mail, calendar and contacts to Fastmail

Up until this weekend my mail, calendar and contacts services were a little disparate:

Now I have all three hosted by FastMail

So why was I using those particular services, and why have I now moved away from them?


I migrated from Gmail to ProtonMail when it was still in beta. As part of the IndieWeb journey I've been on since 2014 I've been trying to move away from silos and big data as much as is practicable.

I supported the concept of what ProtonMail were doing (and still do), particularly the privacy ethos and the ad / tracking free nature of their offering. From a geek perspective I liked the tech behind the way they secure email at rest and (claim to) never be able to access your emails, though as email is inherently insecure that isn't what tipped it for me.

Moving away from Gmail meant the 'trinity' of email, calendar and contacts being all on the same service was broken. But the change seemed to be low-friction for me, and anyway at that time I was planning to keep calendar and contacts with Google until such time as ProtonMail supported all three (spoiler alert: at the time of writing their contacts support is better but still no calendar)

I did have a few niggles with ProtonMail:

  1. Contacts support was poor. At that time it was just name + a single email address per contact (e.g. two separate contacts for one person if they had a personal and work email!), and so I had ended up retaining my main contacts list in Gmail and having a duplicate contact list of emails in ProtonMail. This was a real pain to keep in sync.
  2. Price / value. I don't mind paying for a service, but having two domains and needing about 15-20 email aliases pushed the price up a bit and I was soon at the limit I felt was value for money. I did feel that paying around US$90 ought to have led to a bit more genorosity. (Everyone has different limits of course.)
  3. No calendar support.

Google Calendar

Like any well-honed silo, the water is warm at Google and so it was with their Calendar. It just works, and the UI is a dream. It had all the functionality and connectivity I wanted, so from that perspective there was no incentive to change (which is why most people won't, of course). It's what sits behind it all that is the worry for the community: 'you are the product' and all that!

Moving email away did lead to some friction, as I could no longer directly accept Gmail calendar invites sent to my non-Gmail main email address. Instead I had to either ask people to send invites to my Gmail address (defeating the purpose of moving email away), or do an export of the invite to an *.ics file and then import it into Google Calendar.

Nextcloud Contacts

My IndieWeb user page tells me that I migrated my contacts to OwnCloud in January 2017 (and then to NextCloud in June).

The main reason I did this was because contacts support in ProtonMail was poor (see above).

OwnCloud/Nextcloud has a contacts app with CardDav support, and so I was able to use that to migrate contacts away from Google and so scratch off one of my itches. But it didn't solve the 'two contact lists' issue, which I kicked down the path for another day!

I have been happy with this service, and it was only my need to re-unify email, calendar and contacts that led me to leave.

So why FastMail? Aren't they a silo too?!

I had considered using the NextCloud calendar app instead of Google Calendar, but it was quite slow and not as feature-rich as I wanted. (One showstopper for me was the lack of single-event deletion for repeating events.) So I decided to look for something else that would better meet my overall needs.

Well, yes FastMail is a silo I guess. But I read plenty of reviews about them and pored over their privacy policy, and was satisfied that the trade-off was worth it. They are ad-free too.

At $US50 a year I get all three services I want in one place, with no domain or email alias restrictions. CalDav and CardDav support is built-in so no problems syncing with my mobile devices.

Usability is good: for email and contacts it is better (for me) than ProtonMail / NextCloud respectively.

The changeover was relatively easy to do (the usual tension of waiting for new MX records to propagate across the internet notwithstanding!), and so far I'm happy with my decision.

Early days, though, so let's see how it goes....


Source: Raretrack’s Known Stream